Athletics

Sharp using 'invaluable' Olympic experience to fuel medal bid

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BySportsbeat
01/08/2020 at 10:27 | Updated 01/08/2020 at 10:27

Lynsey Sharp reckons her previous tastes of the bright Olympic lights can propel her to a maiden medal in Tokyo next summer.

The 800m star competed at both London 2012 and in Rio four years ago, where she set a personal best time of 1m57.69s and finished sixth.

The Scot was eliminated in the semi-finals at her home Games but has gone on to scoop European Championship and Commonwealth Games silver in 2014.

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The 30-year-old will travel to Tokyo acutely aware of what the Games entail and hopes that 'invaluable' experience can secure her a spot on the podium.

"I went to London when I was 22, and that experience was invaluable in then helping me in Rio," she said.

"I had that experience of going to an Olympics at that age, so I learned so much.

"Rio was really different again, but I think I'm lucky to have that experience of the Olympics and I'm looking forward to it again.

"The dream is definitely an Olympic medal - I finished sixth in Rio so I want to progress from that, but an Olympic medal is also not easy!

"I've just got to keep on working across the next 12 months and do everything I can to put myself in the mix for it."

Sharp has been in lockdown in Loughborough with fiancee Andrew Butchart, another athlete who represented Team GB in Rio and also set a personal best time in the 5000m with 13m08.61s.

The pair have been running and walking their dog, Bowie, together to keep fit during the lay-off as the countdown to athletics' return intensifies ahead of a crucial year ahead.

Sharp knows there's a way to go before the Games get underway but believes next year's spectacle has the opportunity to be the biggest and best Olympics yet.

"I was at the point where I thought 'if it goes ahead I'll be fine, but if it gets postponed I'll be fine', but now I think it's amazing that we have a unique opportunity to prepare a second time," she added.

"I think there's still a little concern about it going ahead and hopefully it does, but hopefully by that point it will be a celebration of the fact that we've been waiting so long for it.

"Everyone, and the general public, are so excited to have sport back - it's difficult to imagine just now, but it will be amazing when it finally comes around."

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